Instant Family – What it Got Right and What it Got Wrong

Instant Family movie posterAs foster-adoptive parents we loved how well Instant Family portrayed our community. We loved that it not only showed the tough times but the joy of making a family out of chaos.  We’re certain the movie raised some questions about what it’s like the be a foster family and whether or not things are really the way they seem in the movie.  If you’d like to listen to our full review, click here.

Here’s a list of common questions that you might have after seeing the movie. Warning: SPOILERS!

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Episode 122 – What Do Foster Parents Think of Instant Family

Curious what foster parents think of Instant Family? We’ve got an early movie review for you here from a real life foster-adoptive family.  Mark Wahlberg and Rose Byrne play a childless couple who decide to enter parenting through the foster care system and encounter all the struggles of parenting kids who have experienced trauma.  We were able to see an early screening of the movie and can tell you everything you need to know. We offer both what we think of the movie for those who haven’t seen it and then dive into our reflections on how foster families are depicted in the movie with a spoiler-filled review. Listen to our latest episode here.

Instant Family opens in theaters on November 16, 2018

Instant Family

What Happened to All of our Episodes?

To our wonderful listeners,

Thank you so much for listening and learning with us all these years. After nine years of chronicling our family’s journey, we’ve decided to take a hiatus. You can still find a few of our favorite episodes here, and please like our page on Facebook  to be notified of any future episodes.

Looking back over the past nine years, we feel incredibly humbled that so many listeners have decided to join us in loving and serving foster kids. When we were new foster parents, we had grand visions of how we could impact the lives of children in foster care. Very quickly we realized that our ability to care for children was going to be limited by our own time, space and energy. So you can imagine how encouraged we’ve been to know that the podcast has played a part in others stepping up to care for children in foster care.

Our website and Facebook page will remain up as we still plan on being a resource for foster parents. Keep up the hard work, because as you’ve heard… “Foster parenting is the most frustrating, heart-wrenching, all consuming thing we’ve ever done, but when it comes down to it, it’s just about helping kids. And that’s been the most rewarding thing in our lives.”

Episode 116 – Unusual Adoption Story

T interviews Zach about their adoption and its many unusual circumstances. Their story will leave you inspired and stretch your imagination about what is possible in creating a family. Before listening to this episode make sure to watch this great video of “Meredith’s Big Surprise”

Episode 115 – Indian Child Welfare Act

Have you heard of special laws governing the adoption of children who are of Native American descent? In the US, children who are Native American fall under a specific law called the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), which can govern their adoptive and foster placements.

T interviews Johnston Moore about ICWA. They discuss the origins and intentions of the federal law and its ongoing application. Originally created to ensure the rights of Native Americans, Moore says that the law is sometimes used to make decisions that may not be in the best interests of children.

Johnston Moore belongs to a network of activists working to amend the law. If you wish to contact him, he can be reached at http://www.home-4-ever.org

Episode 112 – Opening Up to Birth Parents

Many foster parents draw firm boundaries between themselves and their foster children’s birth parents. But is this right? In this interview with Saint Fults, a social worker in St. Louis, Missouri, we learn of another perspective of openness toward birth family relationships from the beginning of the child’s placement.

Fults advocates that foster parents should consider opening their lives more fully to birth families, including hosting visits in the foster home.

The perspective challenged us to think about what is truly best for the children in our care, and how a higher degree of openness in foster care might better set up birth families for successful reunification.

Episode 109 – All the Dirt on Foster Care and Why You Should Still Do It

We recently were able to participate in the annual Together for Adoption Conference. This episode is based on the breakout session we led there.

We’ve heard a lot of stories about foster care. Sometimes the stories are in the news, sometimes we hear them from people we know, and sometimes strangers volunteer their perspectives. Rather than sweeping the dirt under the rug, we think we should talk about it.

So this episode is our attempt to confront negative stories about foster care experiences. We talk about abusive foster parents, delays in the adoption process, biased social workers and judges, and the pain of getting attached and having to say goodbye.

Come see us in person and enjoy other great speakers at the KidBridge Seminar in Rolling Hills Estates, CA on Saturday, October 29!

Episode 105 – Royal Family Kids

T interviews Jacob, a counselor at Royal Family Kids Camp, a summer program run by churches for foster kids throughout the country and internationally.

Jacob mentioned his film project CAMP. You can contribute to his Kickstarter Campaign here. Help him reach his goal!